In the event of a no deal Brexit, travelling with your pet could require extra blood tests and health certificates. If you are planning to travel at the end of March 2019 you may need to start the process in November 2018! Click here for the latest government advice.
The Pet Travel Scheme, PETS, allows pet dogs, cats (and ferrets) to enter the UK without the requirements of quarantine. The PETS guidelines were developed to limit the risk of travelling pets carrying diseases, not currently present in the UK, back with them.
E.U legislation means that if you are travelling to the Republic of Ireland, or even passing through the RoI to get a ferry to Wales or England, you must have a valid Rabies vaccination and Pet Passport.
Travelling from Belfast to Scotland or England does not require a passport.
- Microchip must be fitted and checked
- Rabies vaccine – after microchipping, over 3 months old, at least 21 days before the 1st entry into the UK or another EU country
- Pet Travel document – your passport
- Approved travel arrangements
- Tapeworm treatment 1-5 days before entry into the UK – administered by a vet
PETS enforces protection against the major zoonotic (diseases that pass between humans and animals) diseases – Rabies and Echinococcus multilocularis (a tapeworm) but it does not consider any of the multitude of diseases that exist in many European countries, but not the UK, that can infect your pet while on holiday.
Many of these diseases can be life threatening, especially when your pet has never had any previous exposure, and most are transmitted by biting flies, mosquitoes or ticks.
|Rabies||Acute, life threatening illness||Rabies vaccine|
|Ehrlichia Canis||Spread by ticks. Causes chronic or acute disease||Tick Control|
|Babesia Canis||Spread by ticks. Causes chronic or acute disease||Tick Control|
|Dirofilaria Immitus “heartworm”||Parasite spread by mosquitoes, causes heart failure etc.||Drugs to prevent infection and mosquito control|
|Leishmaniasis||Multi-systemic illness, spread by sand flies||Vaccine and control of sand flies|
|Echinococcus multilocularis||May not affect the dog but significant risk to human health||Worming treatment on return to UK (legal requirement) and every 4 weeks while abroad|
|May not affect the dog but risk of infection from dog / fox faeces||Worming treatment every 4 weeks will prevent infection and shedding|
What do I need to do?
Organise your PETS passport etc with plenty of time to spare – Contact DAERA Pet Travel Dept. and Cedarmount for details.
Have a look at where you are travelling to, and what countries you pass through. If you will be in southern Europe particularly then you need to organise protection against, ticks, biting flies and heartworm.
- Milbemax – every 4 weeks will prevent heartworm infection and treat tapeworms (including Echinococcus).
- Advantix – every 2 weeks will help repel sand flies and mosquitoes. This also kills and repels ticks.
- Nexgard – every 4 weeks will kill ticks and fleas.
- Scalibor collars will provide tick and biting fly control for 5-6 months. Seresto collar is effective against ticks for 8 months but it is not licensed for biting flies.
No spot-on treatments or collars will stop all insect bites or ticks. Check your pet daily and remove any ticks found, stay away from forests, wetlands etc and keep your dog indoors at night. Vapouriser repellents etc. can help indoors.
- Canileash vaccine against leishmaniasis.
Dogs must be over 6mths old, primary course is 3 injections 3 weeks apart and immunity is complete 4 weeks after this course Immunity lasts for a year. Single annual booster.
For more information please contact:
DAERA NI Pet Travel
[telnumlink]028 77442 141[/telnumlink]
Other Travel Considerations – wherever you are going
- Bring your pet in for a health check in advance of your journey (please call for an appointment)
- Obtain specific advice from your vet on pregnant animals.
- Speak to your carrier, if appropriate, in advance to establish their conditions and ensure you have all the relevant paperwork.
- Sedation for your pet is rarely a good idea. Ask us for advice. There are calming pheromones and treatments to minimise anxiety which are allowed despite the current airline ferry company regulations prohibiting sedation.
- Give your pet a light meal about 2 hours before travelling.
- Check that your pet will have access to fresh water.
- Use a suitable crate or container that allows your pet to stand, sit and lie down in a natural position, and to turn around easily. The container should contain absorbent bedding and provide ample ventilation. A familiar toy or blanket can provide comfort. We strongly recommend you check any specific regulations imposed by the carrier.
- Ensure your pet will not be exposed to extreme temperatures.
- Try to mimic your pets sleeping habits by travelling at night.
What does it cost?
There is no charge from DAERA NI for the passport but Cedarmount does have charges for completing and issuing the passport, for advice on travelling with your pet and the necessary health checks. (The charges may vary depending on your destination as different countries require different paperwork etc).
- Rabies vaccination and health check, £42.61
- Pet Passport Issue and advice, £26.46
- Pet Passport Issue, (advice and full pre-travel health check), £53.57 (Prices July 2018)